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Chad Salge, P.E.

  • Vice President, Virtual Design and Engineering
  • The Brandt Companies, LLC, A Southland Industries Company
  • Dallas, TX

Meet Chad

Tell me about yourself and what you specialize in. I grew up in a familial German community in Central Texas (New Braunfels), received a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Texas A&M University in College Station in 2005, and chased my wife to Dallas when I graduated. From there, I went to work for CH2MHILL (a full-service architectural and engineering company that is now Jacobs) as a detailed designer, project engineer, and project manager for about 13 years.

In 2018, I came to work for Brandt as a project director to help shore up our design-build approach and was asked to lead our engineering, VDC, and commissioning groups across the state of Texas in 2020. My focus has always been mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) design-build. Resulting from my broad experience in all vertical markets and contractual arrangements, I am able to bring a unique perspective and approach to our clients’ projects.

Why do you love working in the construction industry? I sort of fell into the industry after college due to a connection that my uncle had with an engineering company (Lockwood Greene) that he had previously worked with. Ever since that “”serendipitous”” opportunity, I have thoroughly enjoyed and been infatuated with our industry.

The macroscopic impact we have on communities and people, the unique challenge of every project, and the relationally driven aspects of the industry are what I love about what we do. I like a little bit of routine, but also like to change it up and expand my horizons at any chance I get. The places, projects, and people that my career in this industry has allowed me to enjoy have been very rewarding.

What topics and trends are you most passionate about in the industry? I think the most important topic in our industry is project approaches and arrangements. If we are able to set each project up by way of the proper contractual arrangement, partnerships, and true alignment, the entire industry will benefit from it. There is a lot of consternation that comes with poor planning for project arrangements, and it drives people away from each other, limits the ability to find qualified partners, and ultimately drives some people away from our industry.

I am also passionate about Design for Manufacturing (DfMA), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Reality Capture, and other technologies or approaches that will help us prepare for the increased workload and limited qualified personnel that we are going to encounter in the near and distant future.

What advice would you give to the next generation preparing for the future of the industry? Always live on the fringe of your comfort zone when it comes to opportunities that align with your passion and principles. Like a concentric circle, your willingness to accept each challenge will allow you to expand your competency to a point that you will look up one day and realize what kind of impact you can have on the industry.

Find a mentor that can help guide you through this growth and be an advocate for you. The confluence of technology and construction will continue to come to a head, so embrace both fully. The complexity of our industry will certainly be different in the near and long term, but the fabric of it will always be the same: we are simply here to provide solutions for people and communities that we deeply care about.

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About Chad

Your Superpower Passion for people

What Motivates You Providing opportunities for all

Tool You Can’t Live Without Suitcase (I love to travel)

Best Artist/Song for Work Tyler Childers or Zach Bryan

Jobsite or Office Mix of both

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